6 votes
Accepted

How does optimality theory handle opacity?

Unsurprisingly, this issue has plagued OT since its inception a quarter century ago. One issue is defining exactly what "problem" is: my own view is that the relevant question should not involve ...
  • 70k
5 votes

What's a good introduction to constraint-based phonology?

There is some confusion in the question owing to the use of the word "pronunciation". There is a constraint-based theory of phonological computation, Optimality Theory, which is the dominant theory in ...
  • 70k
4 votes
Accepted

In what way production of language is optimal or most economical?

There is a whole strain of research (represented, e.g., by Florian Jaeger) that regards the communication channel as a Noisy Channel in the sense of Shannon. The uniform information density hypothesis ...
3 votes
Accepted

A question about Optimality Theory

They are explaining how the optimal candidate isn't necessarily a 'perfect' candidate, as it will likely still not comply with some of the constraints. But what makes the optimal candidate optimal is ...
  • 106
3 votes
Accepted

Comprehensive phonological sketches post-SPE

There are vast numbers of such works, if you have the right criteria. As a starting point, there are the volumes in the Phonologies of the World's Languages series. The issue of "framework" may ...
  • 70k
2 votes

A question about Optimality Theory

In phonology, one problem with demonstrating this is that there is little agreement on what is in the universal set of constraints. It is widely assume that there is some scheme of segment-...
  • 70k
2 votes

What are the main weaknesses of autosegmental phonology?

It depends on what you consider to be an essential, defining feature of the theory. Your question about “explanation” points to the biggest problem: the theory attempted to encapsulate an explanation ...
  • 70k
2 votes
Accepted

What's a good introduction to constraint-based phonology?

The best entry-level introduction I've found is Matt Gurevitch's OT Machine, a tool for conlangers to build and test out Optimality Theory-based models. It includes an overview of how OT works in ...
  • 53.9k
2 votes
Accepted

Optimality theory, Autosegmental phonology and linear phonology

Unsurprisingly, the Wikipedia claim misstates the situation. OT is a theory of "derivational mechanics", and autosegmental phonology or linear phonology are theories of representation. One therefore ...
  • 70k
2 votes

Is it accurate to think of OT and auto-segmental phonology as offering explanations on how phones are derived from phonemes?

The motivation underlying autosegmental phonology is that phonological processes frequently are not well-described by the 1-to-1 feature-to-segment relations assumed in SPE phonology, especially in ...
  • 70k
2 votes

Is there a cross-Linguistic OT overview on epenthesis and deletion?

The simple answer is, yes, there are myriads. As far as I know, there is no work that attempts to assemble all or even 50% of the instances of epenthesis and deletion across languages, and discuss ...
  • 70k
2 votes

What is Rich Base?

Richness of the Base (RotB) is a slogan referring to the fact that Optimality Theory only evaluates output, and has no mechanism for saying what things exist in inputs. This is in contrast with rules-...
  • 70k
1 vote

Optimality Theory, voiceless plosives become aspirated in English

This can be disposed of with a contrast-enhancement constraints, which makes the output of /p/ vs. /b/ more perceptually salient (there being more phonetic cues to identify the distinction when ...
  • 70k
1 vote
Accepted

What is a markedness constraint in Optimality Theory?

First thing to remember is that in OT, constraints do not allow, they forbid. Second thing to remember is that markedness constraints are about all representations, not just featuress. Third thing to ...
  • 70k
1 vote
Accepted

What are the similarities between rule-based phonological theory and Optimality Theory?

A few abstract properties are the same (sometimes the terminologies is different, but that is not a real difference). One that the grammar computes the relationship between underlying form and surface ...
  • 70k
1 vote

Understanding OCP(place) and CodaCond constraints in Optimality Theory

CodaCond is short for "Coda Condition", and, according to McCarthy (2008: 225), is violated once per "consonant place specification that is not linked with an onset consonant (Ito 1989). Sometimes ...
  • 4,742
1 vote

How to analyze these data with Optimality Theory?

In ("standard") OT, there is a given list of constraints – the problem is nobody knows what the exact set of constraints is. Typically, people intuit the phonetic motivation for a particular change, ...
  • 70k
1 vote

Serial vs. Parallel

The distinction is generally framed in terms of the notion of "time-invariant computation", whether the output of one computation requires the results from another computation to be available. In a ...
  • 70k
1 vote

Serial vs. Parallel

For those linguistic theories that distinguish underlying from surface expressions by deriving surface from underlying using transformation rules of some sort, when several changes are required to get ...
  • 12.2k

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